Welcome to Volume 2 No 2 of Contemporary Psychotherapy. In this issue we present a number of articles that specifically deal with practical approaches to working as a counsellor or psychotherapist.
This variety of presented approaches reflects a search within our professional community for how to work best as a therapist; a search that is about understanding whether the use of one way of working may need to be replaced by a flexible way of working. And indeed there is a growing preference for an integrative or eclectic approach to working as a therapist, both in the US and the UK. This is the result of an impressive body of research evidencing the quality of the relationship between client and therapist as being the decisive factor for a positive therapy outcome, the theoretical modality of the therapist adding relatively little to a positive outcome and no single modality being considerably more effective than another. This is driving therapists to search for a broader set of skills that cannot be gained from one modality alone.
Professors Mick Cooper and John McLeod for example, in a recent article that reflects this trend, argue in favour of a new pluralism as a paradigm for therapy (see http://therapytoday.net ). It is a useful article in the context of the search for more effective therapy but in it the authors claim there is a distinction between pluralistic and integrative ways of working. It is doubtful though whether they make a valid point as such a distinction seems artificial. What is clear however is their article deals with issues similar to those in the current issue of Contemporary Psychotherapy.
In this issue Miles Groth introduces us to therapeutic work with a marginal client group - young males; Kerry Beckley presents Schema Therapy, a new exciting integrative therapy model for work with difficult and complex client material developed by Jeffrey Young; Diana Voller presents Negative Capability (a term coined by Keats in 1817), as a tool for being with uncertainty, an experience that can frighten many therapists; Linda Garbutt presents a model of reflection for recovery from trauma whilst Dichelle Wong & Jane Morris present a novel way of working with older people, an issue that no doubt will vastly increase in importance because of the rapidly aging population in the Western world.
As always we include reviews and links to interesting media content on the web. We hope you enjoy this issue.
Image: Flight 888 by von h. koppelaney